How many times has this happen to you?
You are standing in front of the stove to boil a packet of milk. It is one of the easiest things to do. Just light up the stove and wait for it to boil. It is so easy that you believe you can use those few minutes of waiting to do a few other things too. You are tempted to go grab your phone, attend to the door, wash an apple, fill your bowl with some cereals and so on. You are sure that nothing significant will happen by the time you return. But, almost always, at that very moment that you are away, the milk boils over!
I realise this can happen to us when we try to be present and listen. We believe we have done it all the time; it is so simple; we know how it will go and what will be said and so we try to do just one or two other things. And, at that very moment, for the person in your presence, the milk has boiled over – the person has said or felt something significant and you have missed it.
So, if we can be fully present we can achieve the goal of being there when it is boiling and not leave the person and the milk unattended and let the moment boil over.